As a Welcoming City, Seattle Officials need to demand that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) stop targeting immigrant rights activists and leaders in our community.
Seattle, WA (January 18, 2018) — The City of Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission denounces U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for targeting immigrant rights activist and former member of the Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission, Maru Mora-Villalpando. The federal government’s immigration enforcement efforts have made it common practice and policy to harass immigrant leaders like Maru, who play a vital role in advocating for social justice and immigrant rights across our region and the nation.
Over the years, Maru has courageously led community-based efforts to fight for the most vulnerable immigrant populations across Washington State. Most recently, this has included leading the Northwest Detention Center Resistance (NWDCR) to protest the inhumane treatment suffered by immigrants at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma. Now, ICE, in an act of retaliation, has chosen to target Maru by serving her with deportation papers. ICE has also detained immigrant rights activists Ravi Ragbir and Jean Montrevil in New York City. This callous practice intends to intimidate activists and quiet the voices and actions of a growing movement for immigrant rights.
This country was founded by refugees from a country where they were persecuted for practicing their chosen religion. They were immigrants looking for a better life for themselves and their children. In the generations since then, millions of people from all over the world have followed in their footsteps. The current administration refuses to accept this fundamental truth about our country. The President – a grandson of immigrants himself – has repeatedly demonstrated his utter disdain for immigrants and refugees, in word and action.
We call on The President to stop terrorizing our immigrant and refugee families and communities. We call on Congress to stand up to his racist policies and proclamations, and stand up for all the immigrants and refugees who have truly made our country great.
We applaud our Public Officials at the City of Seattle for standing in solidarity with Maru. To truly live up to our commitment to remain a Welcoming City, we must fiercely advocate for those who fight for the dignity and safety of our immigrant and refugee communities.
The Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission is a community advisory group to Mayor Durkan and the City Council. https://www.seattle.gov/immigrant-and-refugee-commission